Energy infrastructure projects

energy infrastructure projects A look at several energy infrastructure projects carried out in Romania.

Romania is involved in building several natural gas pipe lines with neighbouring countries. That comes in addition to the Nabucco gas pipeline, which was supposed to link Turkey, Bulgaria, Romania, Hungary and Austria and which was abandoned in the summer of 2012 due to the failure of securing gas suppliers. In terms of projects, it should be noted that in 2010, the foundation was laid for the Azerbaijan- Georgia- Romania- Hungary interconnector. It involved the transport of Azeri natural gas through Georgia, and the building in that country of a liquefying terminal. That would be followed by the transport through the Black Sea, building a terminal to revert to gas in Romania, and the subsequent transport of the gas through pipelines crossing Romania and Hungary towards Central Europe.


More recently, on 22 April this year, Bulgaria, Greece and Romania signed an agreement to connect their natural gas networks, a project that would require investments worth about 220 million Euros. This so-called "vertical corridor" is estimated to become operational by 2018. Also, in May, in Riga, the foreign ministers of the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary and Romania signed a declaration of intent on linking together and developing their gas supply networks. Here is Romanian Foreign Minister Bogdan Aurescu:


"It is very important that the text makes reference to the diversification of both gas sources and supply routes, and even makes reference to the proposal made by the European Commission to set up an energy union. Last but not least, its main aim is to promote the implementation of interconnections in the bi-directional system between the states that have signed this joint declaration. It is a document of intent. It is a political declaration, and on its basis the parties will be able to further work together in seeing through the projects that you know quite well. I remind you of the joint project run by Bulgaria, Romania, Hungary and Austria. And here is Slovakia joining this inter-connection system. Also, I remind you of the vertical corridor which Romania is promoting. All those projects are based on the inter-connection of national natural gas transport systems."


Natural gas expert Dumitru Chiselita told Radio Romania about the situation of interconnections that exist or are being built between Romania and neighbouring countries:


"The interconnection between Romania and Ukraine is at two points. In the north of the country we have Mediesu Aurit, in Satu Mare County. In the east, we have Isaccea. In the west there is an interconnection with Hungary, and the fourth interconnection, which was inaugurated last year on August 27, is with the Republic of Moldova, a small scale one. At the same time, we are building an interconnection between Romania and Bulgaria, at the Giurgiu-Ruse point. Most of the existing interconnections, three out of four, more precisely, are unidirectional; there are two interconnections between Romania and Ukraine, which right now only flow from Ukraine to Romania. "


Those are the interconnections through which Romania imports gas from Russia. Dumitru Chiselita:


"These are solely from the exterior to the interior. There is also a third interconnection, from Romania to the Republic of Moldova. Therefore there is a single output, from Romania to Moldova. The fourth interconnection, the one with Hungary, is basically the only bi-directional interconnection with an EU member country. In terms of capacity there is a lack of proportionality. The capacity for input from Hungary to Romania is 1.75 billion cubic meters, while the output capacity from Romania to Hungary is only 0.087 billion cubic meters. In terms of the future Giurgiu-Ruse interconnection, we are talking about an input-output capacity which is designed to reach 1.5 billion cubic meters."


Dumitru Chiselita also talked about the declaration of intent signed in May by the foreign ministers of Romania, Hungary, Slovakia and the Czech Republic regarding cooperation in natural gas transport. We asked him if the exiting Romania-Hungary interconnection was enough from the point of view of that declaration:


"We are talking about a capacity of 0.087 billion cubic meters from Romania to Hungary, and as such we can only qualify that as 'petty border trade', with the appropriate air quotes. Romania and Hungary can only exchange natural gas for regions close to the borders, at least for the gas flowing from Romania to Hungary. For such a project, capacities have to be either built up further, or reconsidered, they need billions of cubic meters capacity, like we have at Mediesu Aurit. Beyond those points, we have to also adapt the national transport system so that it can meet the technical requirements of the transportation systems in neighbouring countries."


On March 5th, Romania started exporting gas to the Republic of Moldova through the Iasi-Ungheni pipeline, which was officially inaugurated last August. This year, the Republic of Moldova is going to import from Romania over one million cubic meters of gas, at a price of 255 dollars per thousand cubic meters, compared to 332 dollars, as it pays for gas from the Russian Federation. Right now, talks are being held with foreign partners for extending the Iasi-Ungheni pipeline to Chisinau, which would need 60 million Euros, of which 10 million Euros would be put up by the European Union. 



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Publicat: 2015-06-23 13:43:00
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